Monday, 7 February 2011

Cold Process (CP) Soap - some techniques

This week we are going to have some fun with a technique best used in cold process soap.

I don’t think it would work very well in Melt & Pour (M&P) as I think you will get a colour bleed. I have yet to try it in M&P. Maybe that will be another tutorial.
See our entries on equipment here and our basic recipe here. Please remember to wear your safety goggles and be careful when working with lye and run your measurements through a lye calculator found here or here or you could buy Soapmaker.

Olive oil                     680         gr            68.0%
Palm                          302         gr            30.2%
Beeswax                   18           gr            1.8%

Lye/ NaOH                127.45g
Water/ distilled         315.92g
Lye Discount:           6%
Water Discount:       0%

Fragrance or Essential oil 40g
Colour – I used green and lilac - colour to taste
Cocoa powder - a little

Heat Fats/ oils- 100 F
Cool H2O/ lye- 100 F
Heat your oils and cool your lye water
When the correct temperatures are reached add lye water to the oils
Stick blend until trace – I got to thin trace
 Separate the “soap” mixture into two
Add green colour  and half the fragrance /essential oil to the one mix and lilac colour and the other half of the FO/EO to the other mix.
Pour the base layer (green) and smooth/tap if needed. Then let it sit for about 10 minutes.  This allowed the layer to pour out smoothly and the set up firmer.  
  To get our horizontal cocoa line we are going to dust on a layer of cocoa powder.  To do this use a small sieve/ tea strainer and tap a VERY thin layer of cocoa on your first layer. You can also use a container (such as a small jar) with pantyhose as a “lid”to sift out the powder. 
 You don’t want it too thick or your soap might separate.  You still want to be able to see some patches of soap peeking through.
By this time your second lot of soap should be quite thick. Stick blend until you reack a thick trace if you need to. You want the mixture to be really gooey - somewhere around cold thick pudding.  You want to be able to make globs and have them hold their shape.

When it’s ready ( used an egg timer to time about 10 minutes), start spooning your second color.  
 Insulate the soap. Let it sit overnight or as long as your recipe requires and then cut!
Here’s a tip on cutting soap with mica/ cocoa lines. Cut the soap with the line of mica/ cocoa runing parallel to your work surface. You will get a drag line in the soap if you try to cut it any other wayrst.  Depending on what type of line you want, you can cut your loaf of soap either on its side or sitting as normal.
  Handy Hints:
*If you are using an FO that moves VERY quickly, keep your temps low and don't discount your water for best results.
*For layers with impact, choose contrasting colours, or use dark-to-light colours to achieve a gradient effect.


  1. Thank you very much! I've been looking for the way to make that line in between 2 layers for quite a long time, and now I found it. Thanks again!

  2. You are welcome. Enjoy the process


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